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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R3T13S

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The design and uses of bath-house palaestrae in Roman North Africa Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
Function
Art
Athletics
North Africa
Colonnade
Baths
Gymnasium
Bath-house
Architecture
Palaestrae
Inscriptions
Palaestra
Greek
Spectacles
Roman
History
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Taylor, Craig
Supervisor and department
Rossiter, Jeremy (History and Classics)
Examining committee member and department
Mills, David (History and Classics)
Yegül, Fikret (History of Art and Architecture)
Fracchia, Helena (History and Classics)
Lovell, Nancy (Anthropology)
Department
Department of History and Classics
Specialization

Date accepted
2009-07-07T15:55:22Z
Graduation date
2009-11
Degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
Doctoral
Abstract
The topic of this thesis is the palaestrae of Roman Africa. Although many examples of palaestrae have been found in North Africa, there has never been a study solely focused on these facilities. They have usually been considered only in the context of Roman baths and as features of bath buildings. This thesis examines palaestrae in a new light and analyzes their role as athletic facilities within the sporting culture of Roman Africa. The Roman provinces of North Africa have yielded a particularly rich body of evidence for athletic games and festivals, making this region ideal for studying this topic. The concern of the thesis is twofold. The first issue is the design and construction of palaestrae in Roman Africa. There is discussion of their form, of construction techniques, and of their place in the overall design of baths. The second issue is how their form relates to function. There is a discussion of how palaestrae accommodated athletic activities, such as training and competition. The thesis concludes that palaestrae in Roman Africa were an important part of local athletic culture, used for training and possibly for competition. Greek and Roman models influenced their design, but climate played a significant role. Great effort was made to ensure these buildings were kept cool, not only by placing them in less exposed areas but also by insulating them from the heated rooms of the baths. Local resources and building techniques were important factors in their construction. This thesis includes a gazetteer of palaestra sites in Roman Africa and a catalogue of all inscriptions relevant to the use of palaestrae.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R3T13S
Rights
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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